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Make good use of foods and herbs that are rich in natural antioxidants and immune-enhancers which work synergistically to protect you.

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Eat Fat And Thrive

Eat Fat And Thrive

In the so-called civilized world, the population continues to grow sicker by the year, while food manufacturers, government bodies and the mainstream medical profession keep telling us that we need to eat more low-fat-high-carb foods as well as lots of unsaturated oils and stay away from saturated fats and oils if we want to stay healthy. So people go on buying convenience foods chock full of carbs and sugars, the golden oils and products containing them all the while believing that they are doing the right thing if want to protect themselves from heart disease, cancer, diabetes and all the other degenerative diseases that plague the Western World. Well, my friends, all such advice is not only untrue. It is positively dangerous. To stay healthy, protect yourself from obesity, degenerative conditions and early aging, you must dump the starchy carbs and hidden sugars, all those highly processed unsaturated oils and the packaged convenience foods which contains them. It’s time to get savvy about the right kind of fats and introduce them to your meals. They can bring energy, beautiful skin, and real protection from early aging and chronic illnesses. By the way, they can also make your meals taste great. STOP BLAMING YOURSELF In case you think it’s your fault that you happen to be suffering with a chronic condition or you are overweight, think again. Like most conscientious human beings, you have only been trying to follow the guidelines that doctors, governments and the media tells us will keep us well, slim and protected from heart disease. Here’s the truth: The guidelines we have been given ever since World War II have not only been all wrong, they have been truly dangerous to our health. The powers-that-be have instilled in us irrational fear of fat, largely as a result of the poor research and conclusions drawn back in the 1960s—when Ancel Keys and others were trying to figure out how to prevent heart disease. One group of so-called experts jumped to the conclusion that dietary fat was the culprit. Before long, their rash assumptions were turned into a quasi-religious dogma that has stuck. The low-fat, high-carb-and-sugar eating propounded by them, instead of protecting us from heart disease, obesity and other degenerative conditions, has made us highly susceptible to all of them. LIES CONTINUE Here’s another common fat fallacy: “The Western diet has increased in saturated fat over the last century.” Just the opposite is true. At the turn of the last century, most of the population still got their fatty acids from saturated animal-based sources, such as lard, butter, and tallow. They were better off for it. Then, from 1910 to 1970 in the United States, the proportion of animal fats eaten declined from 83% of all fats eaten to 62%, and butter consumption went from 18 to 4 pounds per person per year—all because of the invention and promotion of margarines. Meanwhile, what did increase exponentially was the quantity of fats we began to take in, in the form of chemically refined unsaturated vegetable oils, margarines, trans-fatty acids and junk fats. The results of all this? Our health has continued to decline. By the way, it’s worthwhile taking a look at how well we’ve fared in combating heart disease and obesity since we began shunning animal fats and eating the masses of the carbs they recommended. The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey shows that, since 1980, obesity alone has grown to epic proportions, right from the very year the government’s guidelines were published. THE SKINNY ON FATS From the 1960s onwards, governments worldwide have been telling us to eat less fat and more carbohydrate which they figured would make up for the fat we no longer ate. Low-fat foods began to appear on our supermarket shelves for keen and hungry consumers; they quickly became a major financial success story for food manufacturers. We ate baked potatoes instead of fries with our meals, and thought that we were taking the healthy option. We ate low-fat foods thinking that these were good for us, without realizing that food manufacturers, in preparing their low-fat menus, had replaced the fat with sugar. Meanwhile, we were warned against all saturated fats, told that they are dangerous, and urged to eat more polyunsaturated oils such as sunflower oil, safflower oil, peanut oil—all those golden oils that still fill our supermarket shelves. These oils and margarines were held up as beneficial for protecting us from heart disease. Both of these directives turned out to be big fat lies. BEWARE PROCESSED OILS Polyunsaturated fats and oils—which we have long been urged to eat—turn rancid quickly when heated. All the golden oils most people still believe are good for them turn into health-destroying sources of free-radicals that can do the body a great deal of harm. They attack our cells and damage our DNA. Recent, reliable scientific studies show a link between consumption of these processed polyunsaturates and cancer as well as heart disease. DUMP THE GOLDEN OILS Safflower, Corn, Sunflower, Soybean and Cottonseed Oils all tend to be badly processed, using all sorts of unpleasant chemicals. Avoid them. Canola oil, which fills many of our ready-made food products, has been associated with fibrotic heart lesions. It is high in sulfur and turns rancid easily. Margarines are full of trans-fatty acids. Shun them. There’s something else we now know about these oils that will probably surprise you. Analysis of the fat in clogged arteries reveals that only about 26% is saturated fat. The rest is made up of polyunsaturates. So here’s the bottom line: The heart’s preferred source of food when under stress is good old “unhealthy” saturated fat. OMEGA 3 BENEFITS Omega-6 and omega 3 fatty acids, when in the right balance, help your body in all sorts of ways. They increase your cells’ sensitivity to insulin, helping your body regulate its blood sugar. They increase metabolic rate and fat metabolism, so more of your stored fat can be burnt as energy. Natural foods rich in the omega-6 oils include avocados, nuts, flax seeds, and spirulina. Paleontologists have discovered that our ancestors consumed them in the ratio of 1:1 or 2:1 (omega-6 to omega 3 fatty acids). However today, in our Western diets, the balance between these two fatty acids has become all screwed up. Modern diets contain a ratio of about 22:1—far too high for optimal health. This excess can cause all sorts of problems, from weight gain to cancer. What can we do about it? For a start, you never have to worry about getting enough omega-6s. They’re everywhere. What you do need to do is increase your intake of omega 3 fatty acids]. A great way of doing this is to start taking a good-quality fish oil supplement. EAT IN ABUNDANCE Have no fear of the saturated fats found in meat and butter from grass-fed animals, and tropical oils like coconut oil. Coconut oil is great for cooking. Extra-virgin olive oil is great for salad dressings. Eaten on their own, or together with protein, but without an abundance of starchy carbohydrates, good quality natural fats alleviate hunger and act as an excellent source of energy throughout the day. Eating too little good fat cab lead to the experience of sitting down to a meal and, no matter how much you eat, still craving food at the end of it. Good natural fats let you know when your body is satisfied. Introducing the right kind of fats to your meals also helps balance hormones while significantly enhancing how you look and feel. MEET THE GOOD OILS Cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil, cold-pressed walnut oil, cold-pressed fax-seed oil, avocado oil, sesame oil and coconut oil are all excellent for salad dressings. Eat them and thrive. Olive oil is monounsaturated rather than polyunsaturated—one of the safest vegetable oils you can use. It is well-suited to dressings and can be heated, but only to moderate temperatures. Make sure the Extra Virgin Olive Oil you buy is cloudy (not filtered) and a golden-yellow color. Sesame oil is reasonably stable and can also be used on salads as can cold-pressed walnut oil and avocado oil. Coconut oil is a highly saturated oil/fat and is the safest, healthiest choice for cooking, because it remains stable even at high temperatures. It also boasts antiviral and antibacterial properties. DON’T FORGET BUTTER Millions of shoppers buy margarine in the belief that it’s “better for you than butter.” This is another baseless opinion, forced upon us by bad science and multinational food manufacturers. The process used to turn out margarine, known as hydrogenation, does horrendous things to the already-rancid vegetable oils it is made from. Margarines also contain all sorts of additives you wouldn’t want in your body. It is not surprising that they have now become associated with the development of both cancer and heart disease. Butter on the other hand contains many essential nutrients. Look for butter made from the milk of grass-fed animals if you can find it. Experiments comparing the health of margarine eaters with butter eaters continually find in butter’s favor. In one study, the risk of developing heart disease for butter users was half that of eaters of margarine. Infants and children especially benefit from butter, which fosters normal growth and development. Use this delicious stuff liberally—and without guilt—in the knowledge that your body will thank you for it. THE LAST WORD OF ADVICE Fats and starchy carbs like pasta, bread, and pizza do not mix. Eating them together bring about what is known as the Randle Effect: When lots of fat and carbohydrates are eaten together, as they often are in the standard Western diet, the fats get burnt as fuel, while the carbohydrates are converted to glucose. The glucose in turn is converted into more body fat, throwing any overweight, insulin-resistant person into a terrible vicious circle, where hunger and carbohydrate cravings lead to overeating, followed by an inevitable increase in blood sugar and insulin levels as well as body fat deposits and yet more cravings. The irony is that, for a long time, we have been blaming dietary fat for this, when this phenomenon is actually caused by a high starchy carbohydrate intake, especially in the presence of the junk fats found in margarines, golden oils, and convenience foods. Natural fats eaten on their own or together with protein, but without an abundance of carbohydrates, do not cause the laying down of fat in the body. Nor do they cause insulin resistance. This is perhaps the most difficult thing to grasp for those of us who have been highly schooled in the high-carbs-low-fat approach to weight loss and age protection. Yet, when it comes to staying well it is essential to understand.

Oil Pulling - Ancient Healing From The Coconut

Oil Pulling - Ancient Healing From The Coconut

Many years before Ayurvedic medicine arrived in the West, I made a journey to hospitals throughout India to learn all I could about this ancient healing tradition. I was bowled over by all the marvelous things I did discovered. When I arrived at the Ayurvedic Hospital in Kerala—land of the coconuts, I found thousands of acres, interspersed with twisting waterways lined with organic coconut trees. Doctor’s there taught me how inexpensive organic coconut oil can heal your whole body using a technique which is called “oil pulling.” I am excited about sharing this with you. Oil Pulling There are literally thousands of types of bacteria in your mouth, including Streptococcus mutans—an acid-producing bacterium that is a major cause of tooth decay. During oil pulling, coconut oil produces acids which breakdown these toxic pathogens. When you take coconut oil into your body through oil pulling, your system converts one important ingredient, lauric acid, into monolaurin, which has antibacterial, antiviral and antiprotozoal properties. In truth, coconut oil contains the largest amount of lauric acid of any fruit or vegetable on the planet. Monolaurin is a monoglyceride with the ability to destroy negative invaders in the body that have a lipid coating. The lipid-coated viruses and bacteria that it attacks include the HIV virus and the influenza virus as well as a number of other pathogenic bacteria and protozoa. Another ingredient in coconut oil, capric acid, also boasts antimicrobial properties. Finally, coconut oil is about 66% medium chain triglycerides or MCTs. These offer a huge variety of health benefits, including sating your appetite. Powerful Detoxifier The oil pulling technique has been used for some 5000 years, not only because it reduces plaque in the mouth, but as a means of healing conditions throughout the whole body—from inflammation, pain in the joints, chronic fatigue, sinusitis, back pain and diabetes, to migraine, PMS, and chronic skin problems. Oil pulling is powerfully detoxifying to the body as a whole. The mouth is home to billions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other parasites and other toxins which undermine health and can trigger disease. It is these beasties and their toxic waste products that create gum disease and tooth decay. They are then passed on to the rest of the body. The immune system is constantly fighting off these pathogens. When we become overloaded from excessive stress, poor diet, or environmental toxins, they leak into the whole system and can create secondary infections, as well as a wide variety of other health issues. Pathogenic oral bacteria, and the toxins that they produce, harm far more than just your mouth. They circulate through the bloodstream and are carried all over the body. reduce plaque by at least 50% Coconut oil is highly responsive to temperature changes. In a cool room it goes solid. But set it in the sunlight or immerse a jar of it in hot water for a few minutes and it will turn into a crystal clear liquid oil. Oil pulling is believed to reduce plaque by at least 50%. It involves rinsing your mouth with coconut oil, much the way you would use a mouthwash. Even in its solid form the coconut oil will quickly change into a white liquid as it responds to the heat of the mouth. So how do you do oil pilling? You’ll need a container of organic raw coconut oil that is natural and has not had any fragrance taken out of it. Put a teaspoon to a tablespoon of oil in your mouth. It will probably be in its solid state. But it will melt as soon as you get it in your mouth. Swish the oil around in your mouth for around 10 to 15 minutes. Then spit it out completely. Finally, brush your teeth. This is best done twice a day after which you brush your teeth. You must never swallow the oil. You see, by the time you’ve done your oil pulling exercise each time, the oil will have become loaded with bacteria, toxins and mucus. You must then spit it out. I did oil pulling for eight months, after which my teeth were whiter, my breath was fresh and my tongue and gums had a healthy pink color to them. I was so pleased that I figured “I probably don’t need to do oil pulling any more”. So I stopped. After about three months, I realized that I was getting some slight swelling in my mouth. So I resumed oil pulling and have continued ever since. I actually enjoy it. So will you I predict.

Beware Of Truvia

Beware Of Truvia

In 2009 the US FDA approved two versions of a new sweetener developed for Coca-Cola and Pepsi, Truvia and PureVia, both of which use rebiana—an extract from the South American plant Stevia. Truvia has just hit the market in Great Britain supported by gigantic public relations celebrations that would do an aspiring politician proud. Stevia, in its natural state, is the best no-calorie health-supporting natural sweetener on the planet. Here is what you should know: 1. TRUVIA IS NOT STEVIA. 2. I ADVISE THAT YOU AVOID IT. Like every plant which has long been used as a food source, Stevia is a complex of synergistic substances and compounds including numerous steviosides, rebaudiosides, and glycosides. It is this synergistic power that creates its unique benefits including its anti-oxidant properties. When the FDA declared that these two manufactured zero-calorie sweeteners were “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) it referred only to a couple of the active ingredients taken from Stevia that had been used in manufacturing including rebaudioside A—a component which imparts to the natural Stevia plant some of its sweet taste. What takes place when you extract only one or two of a plant’s parts and throw away the rest? Does the product you make out of this affect your body the same way as the natural plant? Virtually never. In The Toxicology of Rebaudioside A: A Review, researchers at UCLA report that a living organism metabolizes stevioside compounds and rebaudioside A at different rates. This makes it impossible to assess the potential risks to the body. The company behind the development of both Truvia and PureVia is Cargill. Cargill is one of the most notorious corporate polluters in America (which Conde Nast Portfolio listed as one of the “Toxic Ten.”) Coke and Cargill have conducted their own ‘research’ into the safety of Truvia on which the FDA gave them the go ahead to sell the sweetener. However, no genuinely independent studies have been done to affirm the safety of the product. And as even the Truvia website itself states: “While rebiana is natural and comes from a plant, it is not certified or grown organically at this time. That could happen in the future, depending on consumer demand.” How absurd. How can you claim to have invented an “all-natural” zero-cal sweetener that is not only not organically grown but which no genuinely independent studies have shown to be safe to use over time? THE BEST SWEETENER Last, and by no means least, remember that nature has given us many wonderful wholesome sweeteners which can be used in moderation without any adverse effects. The best sweetener of all is natural stevia—available from iHerb.com. Here are the two best stevias I have found anywhere. The first is great for baking, porridge, and sprinkling. The second is ideal to sweeten tea, coffee, sparkling water, and anything that requires a liquid form. It is also absolutely delicious. STEVITA:SPOONABLE STEVIA Stevita Spoonable Stevia uses only stevia extract with at least 95% pure glycosides (extremely sweet tasting ingredients of the Stevia herb leaves), and erythritol, a crystal granulated naturally produced filler found in fruits, vegetables and grains Order Stevita from iherb ENGLISH TOFFEE STEVIA All Natural, Zero Calories, Dietary Supplement. SweetLeaf liquid stevia with all natural flavors is convenient and easy to use. As a supplement, add nutritious stevia to water, tea, coffee, milk, sparkling water, protein shakes, plain yogurt or anything else you can imagine.. Order SweetLeaf Liquid Stevia from iherb

Bite Into Energy - Food Combining

Bite Into Energy - Food Combining

Remember food combining, developed by William Howard Hay MD? It has changed thousands of people’s lives, protecting them from fatigue, weight gain, degenerative diseases and early aging. The basic principles behind food combining are simple: Don’t mix foods that fight. Never eat proteins and starches at the same meal. Never eat fruit and vegetables at the same meal. And do not eat dessert after a meal. If you do, the dessert gets trapped in the stomach and starts to rot, since it can’t be digested properly. These fundamentals of what has long been known as Conscientious Food Combining are easy to learn and even easier put into practice. The benefits of doing so are many, including freedom from reflux, poor digestion and long-term fatigue. DIGEST TO THRIVE Your body expends more energy on the digestion of food than on any other function. Think how sluggish and sleepy you feel after a traditional Sunday lunch. It may surprise you to learn that the energy your body needs to digest food is even greater than that which you use when taking strenuous exercise. When you take in food, your system has to redirect blood supply—and therefore vital life energy—away from the brain and other organs towards the gut. Once there, your energy reserves get busy breaking down your meal. When you eat foods that fight each other, or more food than your body needs, you greatly diminish your overall vitality. You also build up body pollution. Any food—even good quality food—in excess tends to pollute the body. PROTEINS AND CARBS ARE NO-GO Leave behind the old practice of meat-and-potatoes or fish-and-chips. When the wrong foods are mixed together, this further delays digestion and produces toxicity while increasing both appetite and digestive upsets. Most people’s bodies are not designed to efficiently digest more than one concentrated food in the stomach at once. In the simplest terms, you need an acid medium to digest protein and an alkaline one to digest starch. Eat concentrated proteins and starches together—fish and chips, bacon sandwiches, meat and potatoes—and nothing gets digested. An awareness of this principle lies at the core of virtually every tradition of natural healing. Eating concentrated proteins and starches at the same meal wreaks havoc with digestion. It increases the number of incompletely broken down food particles that find their way into the bloodstream to cause food allergies, depression and exhaustion. Concentrated proteins such as cheese, eggs, fish and meat must have an acid medium for good digestion. If there are any starchy or sugary food including breads, pastas or sweets in the stomach at the same time, they neutralize the acid medium, so the proteins remain incompletely digested and poorly assimilated. All carbohydrates foods need an alkaline medium for digestion and must be eaten at a separate meal. What you can get away with is the occasional garnish for protein foods or fruits—such as sesame seeds or raisins—but you would not want to add them in greater quantity. OUT WITH Convenience FOODS Ready-in-a-minute pre-cooked meals, junk foods, and the standard meat-and-two-veg Western meals are incredibly energy-draining. They present your digestive system with the greatest difficulty of all. Virtually all of these manufactured items are grossly deficient in essential nutrient. for it to break down and make use of. Convenience foods and junk foods are also grossly deficient in essential nutrients as well. So are chemically fertilized fruits and vegetables and foods which have been excessively processed to alter their natural state. Convenience foods contain additives such as artificial colorings and flavorings which are potentially harmful. Such foods include breads, sugar, most meats, sweets, and coffee and all the ready-in-a-minute snacks and meals that fill the shelves of our supermarkets. They have no place at the food combining table. CREATE VITALITY If you want to build energy quickly, start right now to separate your concentrated starches from your concentrated proteins, eating each at separate meals. This will help protect your system from a build-up of acid wastes, restore metabolic balance, and resolve the energy crisis which takes place when digestion is overtaxed. Most important, it can bring you a whole new kind of energy which can have you looking good and feeling better than ever with each week that passes. It is not only separating the kind of foods that you eat that matters for an abundance of energy. You need to be just as conscientious about what you eat. The human body is not genetically equipped to handle the refined flours, sugars and excess quantities of poor quality proteins that make up the typical western way of eating. Our ancient ancestors, whose genetic makeup we share, had no bread, sugar, junk fats or pre-packaged, pre-cooked convenience foods. They ate simple, ordinary, wholesome foods—as much of them as they could kill or gather. Their diet was high in green leaves and vegetables—all complex carbohydrates—and moderate in protein. This is the way our own bodies genetically expect to be fed: Good, wholesome, preferably organic foods, simply prepared and eaten as closely as possible to their natural state. FREEDOM TO THRIVE This way of eating calls for real foods rich in fiber, and plenty of the best fats: Organic coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil, for instance. The health-enhancing properties of real living foods have long been tested and eulogized by highly respected European and American physicians—from Gordon Latto and Philip Kilsby in Britain, Max Bircher-Benner in Switzerland and Max Gerson in Germany, to Henry Lindlahr and JK Tilden in the United States. Eating for energy asks that you combine your foods sensibly, and that as much as possible you choose foods grown on healthy organic soils and served as closely as possible to their natural state, either cooked or raw. This is not as complicated as it sounds. Here are the basic principles of eating of high vitality eating. They quickly become second nature. EAT FRUIT ON ITS OWN Fruit passes through your digestive system very rapidly. It needs little help from digestive enzymes to break it down. If you try to eat fruit at a meal with other foods, its digestion and assimilation are slowed drastically and you can get fermentation in the gut causing indigestion, wind and discomfort. If you have a blood sugar problem, insulin resistance or an overgrowth of Candida albicans, then stay away from sugary fruits altogether, or eat no more than a couple of servings of berries a day. Instead of fruit for breakfast you might have a green drink made from the tops of green vegetables in a juicer or a blender. MAKE ONE MEAL A DAY A BIG SALAD A vibrant, living salad based on home-grown or store-bought sprouted seeds and green vegetables is the mainstay eating for high energy. It’s the best way to get optimal support for rebuilding cells and tissues, rebalancing biochemical processes, and restoring normal metabolism. Sometimes, of course, this is not possible—for example, when you have to eat in restaurants all the time. In this case, you can replace the living salad with a big dish of lightly steamed or wok-fried fresh vegetables cooked in coconut oil and served with a side-dish of soup or a protein food. That being said, the more often you are able to make a living salad the focus of the meal, the sooner you will reap the rewards of your new lifestyle. Remember that your digestive system needs time to complete the digestion of a meal before you put anything else into it. Four or five hours need to elapse between lunch and dinner. Otherwise digestion is not complete, and increased toxicity ensues. Always drink as much filtered or spring water or herb teas between meals as you like. But don’t drink liquids at a meal as they will dilute the important digestive enzymes. AIDE MÉMOIRE Eat fruit or a green drink in the first half of the day followed by a protein or carbohydrate lunch and dinner, both of which should include a big, fresh, raw salad. Leave four to five hours between lunch and dinner for efficient digestion. Eat as much as your body needs and listen to its signals of how hungry you really are. Take your time, chew thoroughly and stop as soon as you feel you have had enough. Never overeat. Get rid of packaged convenience foods that rob you of vitality and undermine well-being. These include breakfast cereals, breads, pasta, sugar and all the so-called goodies made from it. Cut back on tea and coffee. If you drink either, make sure it’s organic so you avoid taking chemicals and pesticides into your body. After wheat, coffee is the second most sprayed commodity in the world. Restrict alcohol to a glass or two of good wine with a meal, once a day. Never eat a concentrated starch food with a concentrated protein food at the same meal. Eat fruit on its own, or leave at least 20 to 30 minutes between a fruit starter and the next course of your meal. You can pick and choose your own foods and make up your own menus once you get your head around these basic principles. Practice Conscientious Food Combining for a month and I think you’ll be delighted with how you look and feel. You can also say goodbye forever to mainstream medications designed to treat GERD—gastroesophageal reflux disease—with all their nasty side effects. Meanwhile your energy will just keep on building.

End Digestive Problems And Irritable Bowel Syndrome

End Digestive Problems And Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Participants on Cura Romana continue to report that former digestive disturbances—from irritable bowel problems and acid reflux to chronic constipation—clear up during an online Cura Romana Journey. The vast majority of participants who have been on long-term medication for these ailments end up no longer needing any medication. Meanwhile, I am continually being asked by others what causes digestive troubles. Here is a pretty good list of the causes that you might like to check off and get rid of in your own life: WHAT CAUSES GUT UPSET Eating too much Eating before the previous meal is completely digested Drinking iced drinks often (especially before or during meals) Too much alcohol Eating on the run Eating at irregular times Eating heavy meals and late snacks at night Over growth of yeasts and fungi such as Candida Albicans Dysbiosis—low levels of good guy bacteria in the gut, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacteria adolescentis Food allergies or sensitivities Nutrient deficiencies such as zinc, magnesium, vitamin B complex Low stomach acid On-going physical, emotional or mental stress Medications such as antibiotics—even when used for only one day—or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) A diet too low in protein Increased demand for protein owing to trauma, surgery, excessive exercise, illness, fasting Too little fiber in your diet Go through the above list and see what, if any, of these issues you can clear from your own life, enabling digestive issues to clear up. What I love about Cura Romana is that it appears, quite naturally, to clear digestive problems from within in most cases, wiping out any need for drug intervention as the body rebalances itself. MY MOTHER TAUGHT ME A CURE For Digestive Problems She was part Native American and I learned a lot from her while I was growing up about the blessings of the herb goldenseal—Hydrastis canadensis. Favorite cure-all of the Cherokee Indians, goldenseal has in recent years won praise from scientists for its widespread benefits, which include banishing morning sickness and nausea, calming digestive disturbances, and banishing skin diseases and hemorrhoids. It can even be used as a douche in the treatment of vaginal infections, as a mouthwash in the treatment of gum problems, and to fight off flu and fevers. One of the most generally effective of all remedies, this is another herb I would never want to be without. HOW IT IS TAKEN: Many people prefer to use the powdered root in capsules rather than as an infusion or tincture, since goldenseal does not taste good. Personally I love the bitter taste. I can feel it working the moment I take it, as an extract or tincture in half a glass of water. Take 1 to 4 capsules three times a day, or tincture of fresh herb 10 to 30 drops, 3 to 4 times a day. NATIVE AMERICAN MAGIC This bitter tonic was much used in the 19th century to soothe disorders of the stomach and heal the liver. The alkaloids which the root contains not only stimulate bile production and secretion, they also destroy unhelpful bacteria in the gut and increase the tone and movement of the gastrointestinal tract. The root relieves nausea during pregnancy, has over-all tonic actions on the nervous system, and is excellent applied in strong infusion to eczema and many other skin problems. COUNTERS INFECTIONS: Excellent for the treatment of all kinds of infection, goldenseal can banish catarrh in the head and throat, and clear up infections of the teeth and gums when used as a mouthwash. CALMS UTERINE CONTRACTIONS: Gently strengthening to muscle tone and circulation, it has a mildly sedative and muscle-relaxing effect on the body, and helps stabilize blood sugar. It can even be used for menstrual disorders, especially menorrhagia.

Blueberry Magic

Blueberry Magic

Could something as insignificant as the tiny blueberry offer powerful protection and healing for your body? It can—and probably in ways that you’ve never dreamed possible. Rich in manganese, phytonutrients, fiber and vitamin C, blueberries are one of the most powerful antioxidants in the plant kingdom. They offer extraordinary anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. They may even help combat diabetes. This was first discovered way back in 1927, when it was found that taking a specific extract of blueberry can significantly slash blood sugar levels. These findings were largely ignored by mainstream medicine. The editorial board on the Journal of the American Medical Association—America’s most revered medical journal—argued that this had to be impossible. They claimed that such extracts could never be standardized. Now, thanks to investigations by independent Life Extension scientists, you can buy an inexpensive, specific blueberry extract, further enhanced with pomegranate, which works wonders. Blueberries are not bilberries. It’s important that you know the difference. Both berries belong to the Heath family of plants, which include rhododendron, American laurel, and broom. The difference between them comes in the size of their seeds, and their skin. Bilberries have been grown all over northern Europe since the 16th century. Unlike blueberries, bilberries are acidic in flavor. These dark blueish-purple berries have long been popular in Sweden. Blueberries (their botanical name is Vaccinium corymbosum or Vaccinium angustifolium) tend to be hybrids of three native American species. They are up to four times larger than bilberries, and they’re pleasingly sweet. Most commercially cultivated blueberries are grown in North America and New Zealand, as well as to some degree in parts of Western Europe. When researchers analyzed vegetables and fruits to determine their antioxidant capacities, blueberries came high on the list. They can destroy free radicals, combat oxidative stress, help maintain healthy blood flow, healthy LDL and blood pressure levels. Blueberry extract, when combined with other natural berry components, may even help prevent and clear bladder infections by blocking bacteria from attaching to the walls of the bladder. In 2005, researchers discovered that the polyphenols which a specific blueberry extract contains can reverse both motor defects and cognitive defects which can develop as your body ages. Polyphenols are natural plant molecules with potent antioxidant capabilities. According to the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, it is the multi-leveled range of polyphenols that brings blueberries their anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The two most active constituents found in blueberries are anthocyanins and pterostilbene. Blueberry anthocyanins are considered one of nature’s most potent antioxidants. It’s pterostilbene, the other blueberry constituent, that helps maintain healthy lipid and glucose levels within healthy ranges. Through its unique biological effects and antioxidative potential, pterostilbene also helps maintain your healthy DNA structure. Blueberry extract also triggers neurogenesis—by stimulating nerve supply and adaptability in the part of the brain primarily affected by Alzheimer’s disease—the hippocampus. People who take in a lot of natural polyphenol molecules from plants have significantly lower rates of neurodegenerative disorders. Blueberry polyphenol molecules are able to cross the blood brain barrier. They’ve even been shown to enhance the release of essential neurotransmitters from aged brain cells. Meanwhile in 2008, animal-based research carried out at University of Florida discovered blueberry extract can prevent the final steps in the formation of destructive amyloid-beta proteins—a major trigger for loss of memory and good brain functions. Other recent studies show that blueberry extract may prevent DNA damage and encourage fast, accurate DNA repair. A recent animal study showed that blueberry compounds increased mean lifespan by 28%. Translate that into human terms and you’re looking at 22 years. Finally, and most fascinating to me, is the way natural compounds in blueberries can act as nootropics. These are often known as smart drugs, neuro enhancers, or cognitive enhancers, which improve aspects of mental functions. I not only have a love of organic blueberries and eat a lot of them when they’re in season. I have been so impressed with the new Life Extension Blueberry Extract with Pomegranate that I take it daily. Do see if you benefit from it as much as I have—and let me know, won’t you? Life Extension, Blueberry Extract with Pomegranate The two most active constituents found in blueberries are anthocyanins and pterostilbene. Blueberry anthocyanins are considered one of nature’s most potent antioxidants. Pterostilbene is the other blueberry constituent that helps maintain healthy lipid and glucose levels that are already within healthy ranges.258-260 Through its unique biological effects and antioxidative potential, pterostilbene helps maintain healthy DNA structure. Order Blueberry Extract with Pomegranate from iherb

A Passion For Herbs

A Passion For Herbs

For more than a million years we humans have lived with herbs. We’ve cooked with them, healed with them, scented our homesand sanctified our prayers with them. On a molecular level, our body recognizes a herb when we take it. Unlike taking a chemical or drug, our body responds to herbs as though they are old friends. When you get to know the nature of a specific plant it enhances your life immeasurably. You can come to know a herb the way a woman knows her lover. When the spirit of a plant meets the spirit of a human you can expect magic. Thanks both to traditional practices and recent scientific discoveries, we now know that certain plants can work wonders for the human body. The classic definition of a herb is a non-woody plant which dies down to its roots each winter. This definition is far too limiting. It was probably made up by 19th Century European botanists who had never seen the rainforest in which, of course, there is no winter to die back in. Neither had they ever heard of woody trees and shrubs such as hawthorn, ginko and elder which are some of the best selling herbs on the market these days. I define a herb as a medicinal plant. It can come from any climate and be a leaf, a bark, a flower or a root. It can be home-grown or wild, a weed, a spice, a plant, which is used for its healing or culinary or beautifying properties. Here are a few simple herbs that can be fun and fruitful to explore: ALOE HEALS The cool, slippery gel oozed out of a leaf of the aloe cactus has been used for almost 3000 years to treat burns and cuts and to undo the devastating effects of too much exposure to the sun. Recent studies show that phyto substances from the aloe actually penetrate damaged tissue encouraging healing and increasing blood flow while easing inflammation and pain. GINSENG STRENGTHENS The Ancient Chinese said so. They spent a fortune on this strange looking man-root. They still do. Thousands of years ago ginseng was taken in order to extend life, to sharpen sexual functioning, to bring clarity to the brain and energy to the body. Russian and German scientists have carried out lengthy studies into the effects of ginseng on humans and animals and concluded that it does indeed sharpen the brain and shorten reaction time. It also improves concentration and helps protect you from damage caused by exposure to long-term stress. GARLIC PROTECTS The ancient Greeks—including Pliny as far back as the first century AD—insisted that this smelly plant banishes worms and coughs. By now there have been more than 2,500 studies confirming its anti-microbial properties and its usefulness in warding off flu and colds not to mention its ability to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels which are too high, and to help clear yeast infections. COMFREY KNITS Its very name comes from the Latin conferta which means ‘grow together’. In 400BC the Greek physician Dioscorides praised comfrey for its ability to stop heavy bleeding and clear bronchial infections. Science confirms that comfrey is rich in the healing compound allantoin which enhances tissue growth and cell multiplication. That is why you so often find it added to ointments and face creams. GINGER SOOTHES A core remedy in the Chinese pharmacopoeia for nausea and gentle cleansing, the deliciously hot ginger plant has been used for more than 1500 years by wise women healers in Europe for tummy upsets. Many scientific studies confirm that it helps travel sickness. Some even show it helps morning sickness in pregnancy—in part because it has the ability to calm excess acid in the stomach and improve digestion. FEVERFEW BANISHES Eccentric English herbalist Nicholas Culpeper was always singing the praises of this cheerful daisy-like plant with its lacy leaves. It was, he claimed, ‘effectual for all pains in the head.’ Recent studies carried out in Britain and elsewhere confirm that he knew what he was talking about. Feverfew can reduce both the frequency and the intensity of migraine. Once you discover the power of herbs it is easy to become so enthusiastic about them you go overboard trying to use them for everything. It is not wise to take lots of different plants all at the same time. Or you might start to think that since a small amount of something is good for you, taking twice or three times that amount will be even better. It isn’t. If you want safe and sane herbal help here are a few guidelines to follow: Herbs occasionally interact with conventional drugs. Be sure to tell your doctor that you intend to try a herbal remedy. If you want to use herbs to treat a serious medical condition, find yourself a good medical herbalist to work with. Don’t do it yourself. Take no more than recommended dosages of a herb or combination. If you notice any adverse reaction, stop right away. Use only the very best herbs whether they be fresh, dried, teas, tinctures, extracts, or capsules. Give plants enough time to work. Many herbs, such as St John’s Wort and Wild Yam, are slow to build beneficial effects on the body. Look to six weeks for results.

An Almost Perfect Food

An Almost Perfect Food

A seed has more power for generating life than any other part of a plant. Little wonder, since seeds are designed to grow new plants. Although the needs of a growing plant are not identical to our own, seeds come packed with the superb balance of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals and plant factors necessary to launch a new plant. As such, they are the finest natural food that “home farming” can provide. Sprouted seeds and grains, grown in a bowl in a kitchen window or airing cupboard, are the richest source of naturally occurring vitamins known. A mere tablespoon of tiny seeds can produce up to a kilo of sprouts. Sprouts come in all shapes and colors, from the tiny curlicue forms of mustard to the round yellow spheres of chickpeas. Common seeds for sprouting are mung beans, adzuki beans, wheat, barley, fenugreek, lentils, mustard, oats, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds. The Chinese invented living sprout foods centuries ago. They carried mung beans on their ships, sprouting these seeds to provide vitamin C and prevent scurvy in sailors. In their dormant state, chickpeas, mung beans, and lentils are filled with enzyme inhibitors. This makes them hard to digest even when cooked and is one of the reasons why eating beans and lentils creates so many digestive troubles. Our bodies are not very well designed to handle them in this form. Enzyme inhibitors can interfere with our ability to absorb minerals present in a food. But when you sprout a seed, all this changes. Its content of B vitamins and vitamin C soars. Enzyme inhibitors get neutralised. Meanwhile, the enzymes dormant in these embryonic plants spring into life to improve the way your own body’s enzymes function. Sprouted seeds of mung beans, chickpeas, unshelled sesame seeds, lentils, adzuki and buckwheat are delicious in salads, as snacks, or used to create live muesli for breakfast. You can buy them from a shop already growing, or sprout them yourself in bowls on the kitchen windowsill. Because they are young plants, and because they are eaten raw, they also convey the highest level of biophoton order to your living matrix. This quote from Clive McCay, professor of nutrition at Cornel University says it all, really. “A vegetable which will grow in any climate, will rival meat in nutritive value, will mature in three to five days, may be planted any day of the year, will require neither soil nor sunshine, will rival tomatoes in vitamin C, and will be free of waste in preparation…They are an almost perfect food.”

Herbal Help

Herbal Help

Valerian: This is the root of the plant Valeriana officinalis, which was the primary herbal sedative used on both sides of the Atlantic before the advent of barbiturate sleeping pills. It is a safe and well tested herbal remedy with a smell like dirty old socks (the smell drives some people's cats wild). Don't let that put you off, since Valerian is a powerful and useful tool for inducing safe sleep - more potent than most of the other natural tranquilizers such as hops or skullcap or chamomile. You can take Valerian in a couple of ways, but I like the tincture best - 10 to 20 drops before bedtime in a little water, or in the middle of the night when you awaken. Alternatively you can use a couple of capsules of the dried root. Valerian in lower doses is also useful when your nerves feel 'shot' during the day. Very occasionally Valerian will be too strong for a particular woman, so that she awakens with a little sense of hangover in the morning. If so, you can either cut down on the dose or try another milder remedy. In any case, it can be a good idea to change remedies every so often so your body doesn't become accustomed to one, rendering it ineffectual. Passion Flower: Passiflora incarnata, also known as Maypops, is a climbing plant that boasts magnificent white flowers with a purple center. It has a wonderful sedative and mildly narcotic effect on the body. Passion Flower is most useful for women who wrestle frequently with nervous tension and particularly helpful when nerves seem to be edgy before and around the time of menopause, when hormones can fluctuate wildly. It is also useful for relieving pain, thanks to its mild analgesic and antispasmodic qualities - all of which has been well demonstrated in laboratory and clinical tests. Passion Flower can also be useful for a woman troubled with premenstrual tension. It is not as strong as Valerian in its actions, is more calming than sedating, and as such is a great alternative to tranquilizer drugs. Use 10 to 20 drops of the tincture or the same amount of the liquid extract in water. Alternatively take two capsules of the dried extract up to four times a day as needed. Where a woman might take Valerian at night just before bed, the best results from Passion Flower often come from taking it 2 to 4 times a day to calm nerves and make everything easier and less stressful. Chamomile Tea: Matricaria chamomilla. One of the nine herbs sacred to the Anglo Saxon god Wotan, chamomile was also much loved by the Romans. Its name Matricaria is derived either from the Latin word 'mater', meaning mother, or from 'matrix', meaning womb. It has for thousands of years been used as a woman's herb against painful menstruation, to calm anxiety and aid sleep - even to help build strong bones, since it contains a form of readily absorbed calcium. Chamomile is also a uterine tonic - something else that has been scientifically evaluated. It boasts many other therapeutic properties as well such as being antibacterial in its actions and good for skin. The easiest way to take chamomile is in the form of a tisane or tea by infusing 5 to 10 grams of the dried flowers in hot water before bed or whenever you need relaxation. Chamomile works particularly well when taken together with Passion Flower. Hops: Humulus lupulus. The flowers from this British herb are often used together with other remedies to treat everything from indigestion to calm nerves. Like Valerian, hops has a pronounced sedative effect, but is milder. Unlike Valerian, hops smells sweet, and can be used without concern for side-effects. You can use hops in the form of a tincture but by far the best way for sleep - particularly good for women who are awakened in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep - is to drink hop tea, which you make before going to bed by steeping the flowers for ten minutes in hot water then straining and allowing to cool. Sit the tea - sweetened with honey if you like - by the side of your bed, so you can drink it when you awaken in the night. Also wonderful is a little pillow stuffed with dried hops blossoms, which you put under your neck when you go to bed, or if you awaken. Oatstraw: Avena sativa. The straw from oats has an ability to restore energy when nerves have been frayed, and for counteracting insomnia. It can help ease night sweats, calm anxiety, and even relieve headache. Again, stuff a little pillow with oat hulls or infuse them in hot water as with hops, and keep beside your bed through the night in case you need it.

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